Construction Bid Writing: Avoiding Jargon and Unnecessary Technicalese
Writing in the language of your client or customer is not only a considerate manner in which to present a concept or proposal, it's also one that - all else being the best it can be - sends out a positive message.
When you communicate in words, phrases and terminology your customer organisation understands, you convey the fact that you understand and are familiar with their world and their operations - at least to the necessary degree.
Conversely, bid or similar documentation that is peppered with phraseology and jargon more meaningful to the bidder than to the prospect/customer, is a strong indication that that supplier or service provider is more self-focused than customer-focused. And that, of course, has a wide range of ongoing implications, none of which are positive.
Don't be clever; be easily understood
It also signals glaringly that the bidder doesn't stop to consider whether or not its communication is clear and easily interpreted by the receiving party. That too, is a conclusion you don't want your prime prospects to left with after reading your proposal.
Depending upon your industry and your audience, it may not be possible to eliminate jargon entirely from your bid documentation. It may be that there is certain terminology that forms the common language of your sector – and you not only can’t avoid it, you must speak to your prospects and clients/customers in that language.
In general, though, beware jargon. Err on the side of elimination.
And certainly avoid all internal jargon. Because this is such a common phenomenon, the following logic bears repeating:
This practice smacks of an internal focus; an inability to see from the client’s perspective.
Internal jargon smacks of an internal focus
Your use of your own internal jargon when speaking to or writing for a prospect or client – if it’s not familiar terminology to them – declares your self-centricity; an inward focus. Your imposition of your world upon theirs. Your expectation that they will conform to your language and thought processes. Client-centricity requires the opposite.
Jargon also makes for obscurity. It smacks of laziness and over-familiarity.
Finally, when it comes to “technicalese” (over-use of techno-speak), it’s likely that not all members of the prospect organisation’s evaluation team will be ‘technical’. Writing in too-technical terms will either alienate them or, at best, leave them behind. Remember: These people are the ones scoring your submission, and you want each one of them to award you maximum points. It helps if they can understand what they’re reading.
Jordan Kelly is a bid strategist, writer and coach/trainer. She is also the author of a range of how-to books on high-value bidding. Her books, along with a free subscription to her newsletter, 'The Bid Strategist', are available at www.bidstrategist.com
Winvic tops out first hotel project in Milton Keynes
A roof covering programme is now underway which will be followed by floor and ceiling curtain walling, and extensive glazing on the 13th floor, which will contain a sky bar, restaurant and public exhibition space.
Work on envelope and cladding will continue with the 30m high, LED-lit satin finish stainless steel circle on the eastern façade completing the external design. The ‘sun’ design will be visible up the city’s Midsomer Boulevard, which was created to align with the sun on the longest day of the year.
Winvic is currently fitting-out the 261 bedrooms, which has included the sailing and positioning of off-site fabricated bathroom pods. Fit-out of other facilities within the hotel will also continue, such as the 12,000 sq ft flexible conference floor that comprises adaptable meeting spaces and an external terrace that has been designed to be high load bearing. The project is expected to be handed over in July 2022.
Mark Jones, Winvic’s Head of Multi-room, said: “We started on site just two weeks after the first 2020 lockdown was announced and despite the unprecedented challenges, our team have hit milestone after milestone on, or ahead, of schedule. I’d like to say a huge thank you to them. Reaching the highest point of any multi-room project is always worth celebrating, but this is a bit more special as it’s Winvic’s first hotel," he said.
Winvic recently lifted eight railway bridge beams into place over the A5, 2km north of M1 J18. It is one of three bridges that Winvic is constructing for Prologis at DIRFT III in Northamptonshire, as part of a £29 million contract to deliver a new Intermodal Rail Freight Terminal.